December 21, 2009

I'm Sold

I majored in marketing in undergrad (among many, many other things, much to my bank account's chagrin) and, though I no longer apply that knowledge on a day to day basis, I still have a love for brilliant advertising campaigns. (Fun fact: Did you know that when Avis rent-a-car unveiled their new mantra "We Try Harder" in 1965, sales rocketed a staggering 28% over the following 9 months?)

What makes an advertisement (or as our British counterparts would say, "an advert") great? Well, if the answer were simple, Marketing would be the title of a single lecture as opposed to an entire major at colleges across the country. Every so often, however, a campaign comes along that is so brilliantly conceived and executed that its greatness is indisputable. Below are some of my favorites.

It is terribly difficult for a feature-length film - let alone a 60-second commercial - to permeate society and create lasting effects. This one did. I can't tell you how many of my grade school friends were reprimanded by their parents for answering the family telephone with the greeting "what's uuuuuuuuppppp!!" Classic.

I remember studying this commercial during my favorite undergraduate course at the University of Virginia titled "Campaigns". What makes it so brilliant is its universal appeal. I mean, who hasn't felt the whipping winds of an approaching semi, or thought twice about passing a large truck while traveling on a small road? Saab spoke to the profound and ubiquitous fear felt by drivers everywhere while capitalizing on their founders' background as fighter jet engineers to win our trust.

This print ad says it all without saying a thing.

This commercial, while probably not all that "brilliant", stole my heart and I just had to post it. I mean, come on, "wear the fox hat"?! That crap's funny.

I just ran across this commercial online the other day and it's actually the catalyst for this post. The world we live in is constantly filled with sensory input. We demand to be entertained every waking minute and require each image we see to be more shocking than. As a result, we have become desensitized to some of life's most intimate and moving situations. It is for this reason that I became enamored with the commercial above. Using only typed words, a basic melody, and expert editing, it somehow kept me captivated until the very end. To me, the brilliance of this campaign lies in it's simplicity - a rare feat when describing a potential solution to such a complex tragedy in today's "shock and awe" world.

[The girl Effect first seen on Amorous Musings]

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